Day in the Life: Someone Parked Too Close…

Don’t you hate it when someone parks too close to your car door for you to open it and get in?   For years, that was a freak-out moment for me. “OMG this is totally my fault because I’m fat!!  A normal person would be able to get in the car and I can’t!!!  Eek!” 

Never mind that this can happen to thin people too.  In my mind, it was all about the fat.

Still, whether this causes a panic attack or not, the options are limited. 

  1. If you are with someone else who can squeeze in, then you can ask them to at least pull the car out…but of course that calls attention to how they’re thinner than you.  
  2. Or you can try to squeeze in yourself…and hope the other car’s owner doesn’t catch you scratching the paint on their car
  3. Or you can decide to get coffee…and hope the other car isn’t there for the rest of the decade

Not that this happens often.  But given the number people who insist on parking their non-compact vehicles in compact spaces,* it does happen enough to drive me nuts.   

Until one day when, once again, I couldn’t get into my car … and  it occurred to me that the console between the front seats of my car isn’t very high.  I could easily scoot across a bench seat … why couldn’t I maneuver over the console of my car?

So I tried it.  

It worked. 

Tonight I was alone, facing a minivan that was parked about 6″ from the driver’s door of my compact car.  I got in the front passenger seat, scooted over the center console to the driver seat, and drove home.  No panic attacks necessary ;)

 

*Admittedly, not all parking lots have non-compact spaces anymore.

13 thoughts on “Day in the Life: Someone Parked Too Close…

  1. I’ve had to do that scoot-maneuver many times. I used to feel like it was all my fault too, until one day I realized that the space I was berating myself for not fitting in to? NOBODY could squeeze into that! It was six inches of door space! And then I got mad at the SUV-driving SOB causing me problems. :)

  2. I hate this. I hate this so much that every time it happens, or every time I see it happen to someone else, I swear I’m going to order up a bunch of “I Park Like a Jerk” stickers to slap on the back window of the offending parker (because sometimes it isn’t the fault of the person next to you, but the idiot who straddled the line four cars down).

    I guess it’s good I don’t think it’s my fault for being fat, but still . . .

    The worst time it happened to me, it was raining, and I had two kids (one four year old, one baby, both in car seats) to hustle to an evening appointment. I tried to be careful, and got myself out okay (even if my coat had big dirty wet streaks on it from both cars). but when I took out the baby’s pumpkin seat, my back door (barely, I swear) bumped the back panel of the other car. I’m not even sure to this day that it was the edge of the door.

    I checked for damage, didn’t see any, and started to leave. Unfortunately, the driver was in the car, and she leapt out and told me that I’d scratched her car. I hadn’t seen anything through the raindrops in the dark, but she found ‘at least’ two marks on her metallic orange car that had given me less than a foot of space (she was parked right on the line, with several feet of space on the other side).

    I apologized, gave her my number and told her to tell me about the damage later. Naive, perhaps, but I really had bumped her car, if lightly, and I wasn’t about to fight with this lady with my kids present since it was cold, and you know, raining.

    The next day, she calls me and tells me that there were actually five dings, three of which she was sure I’d done (which didn’t seem possible to me) so she had to have the entire panel repainted, and I owed her $175. I asked for her number, called my insurance company, and told them the story. They said they’d take care of it.

    I never heard back from either the lady or my insurance company, and my rates didn’t change, so who knows?

    But I am even more careful about other people’s cars, and I have moved myself over the console rather than squeeze in.

    i still want those stickers, though . . .

  3. Personally, if they park so close to my car that I can’t open the door without dinging them, I ding as hard as I can. Park sensibly, people! Especially those SUVs that park in compact spaces. I’ve never keyed a car, but I’ve been tempted.

  4. Personally, if they park so close to my car that I can’t open the door without dinging them, I ding as hard as I can.

    I’m in the passenger side, an if I can’t get in, I open my door and slam it repeatedly against the offending car before asking my husband to pull the car out to let me in. Our car is complete crap, so we don’t worry about damaging it. Despite the fact that it’s painful for me to walk long distances, we park out in the nosebleed spots just to avoid people parking next to us, and there’s still some jerks who will park almost on top of our car.

    It’s not all about my fat either, I have to open the door all the way to accommodate my bum knee. I have to sit down in my seat facing out, and manually move my right leg inside the car, which I can’t do with the door open just a tiny crack.

    So there’s a hint to the folks who just squeeze their cars in wherever, you can’t assume that everyone who parks outside the handicap spots is able bodied and can wriggle into the car. And also, never park next to a vehicle that looks like it’s worth less than the gas inside it.

  5. People who park like that get a note on their car from me that says “if you can’t park it, DON’T DRIVE IT.” And a couple of dings in their car for their troubles.

    On the other hand, as someone who drives a non-compact car (station wagon), it would be nice if those who *do* drive compact cars would park in the compact spaces, and leave the rare larger spots for larger cars. Then maybe we’d all be able to get in and out more easily.

    • …..and people who drive these dirty great gas guzzling beasts should be more considerate of our planet and stop polluting it!!!!

      Lets face it people who drive these dirty great monsters only want attention. hey ho…Granted!

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  7. This asshole-ish ordeal happens to me all the time. People never park a centimeter away from my passenger side, always the driver’s side! WHY?! To be assholes. They don’t have to try it. It is such an innate facet of their personalities that their brain stems, in addition to controlling breathing and heart rate, moderate their asshole-ish behavior per every expelled breath. GOD. I. AM.FULL.OF.ANGER. Good thing I have a psychologist for this!

    Peace, love, and scratch the shit out of their cars!

  8. It definitely happens to everyone, and it’s very frustrating! Twiggy herself would’ve been aghast at the 1/2 inch space left me (pinning me between them and a concrete pillar) by a fellow parker. My awesome, skinny parking garage guys tried for 20 mins to slip in enough to roll down a window for me to climb in but they couldn’t even open the door enough to get a coat hanger in. We gave up and got the sucker towed to another spot for a grand total of $100 on the evil parker’s tab ;)

  9. Unfortunately, for me I have a bad back and I went to see my doctor this morning to get some major pain relief. I went to the chemist to pick up my prescription and the only parking space close enough to the chemist was partially taken up by a monster 4×4 car/people carrier! I noticed she had about 2 ft of room on the drivers side in her space and her wheels were over the white line on my side but i had just enough room to park in there. I opened my door and had to twist my back to get out and turn sidewards and i opened my door and it tapped her door, and i mean tapped no damage at all caused and no force used. I opened it gently. She was in her car and i said i didnt have much room to get out. I came back from the chemist about 3 mins later and her friend was waiting behind my car with the driver and they started pointing to all the chips in her door (obviously where it had been banged previously by other cars). They both started blaming me for causing all the damage. I explained to her that i didnt cause any of these and that my door hardly touched hers and even went as far as opening my door again and lined it up against hers to prove that the scratches were much higher than i could have possibly done! She knew i was right and just said “whatever Im contacting my ins company today and you will be hearing from them!”. I told her she just wanted a new paint job for other peoples damage and that i wont be blamed for it. She took my registration so i took hers. Anyway, I rang my insurance company and told them what had happened and that my car door barely touched hers and they said they are opening a claim for 6 mnths in case she decided to make a claim and are freezing my 4 years no claims for 6 months. My insurance is up for renewal in a few days which means i wont get a discount and will have to pay a much higher premium for something i didnt do! Is this fair? Im the one who had to twist my back to get out of my own car and within my parking space. People rip off insurance companies all the time and make premiums rocket! people who drive these dirty great ugly gas guzzlers should park sensibly and leave enough room on BOTH SIDES for people to get out of my car. Im taking a tin opener with me next time so i can get into my own car. Grrrr

  10. I do drive a big truck – a Ford F150 crew cab. And I am always very careful when I park to leave plenty of room on both sides. If a space looks a little too small, I’ll pass it and go find another. I want to make sure I can get in and out, and that other people don’t bang up my truck (it’s pretty new, and a really nice truck).

    And I’ve STILL come out several times and been unable to get in because someone has come and parked right next to the driver’s side door, so close I can’t get in. The few times it has happened, I have been able to have someone else get the truck out for me – once was a kind gentleman who was walking by (and boy, was that trust on my part, though with where I was, I figured it was pretty safe).

    The thing is, the times I’ve been blocked in, it’s usually been by some small, compact car that had a ton of room on the other side. It usually ends up looking like they did it on purpose. I frequently wonder if it isn’t people who have something against people who drive “big ugly gas guzzlers”.

    Thing is, I drive what fits me, and what works for me. So it isn’t people with big SUVs and gas guzzlers that are obnoxious like this – it’s people who are inconsiderate or think it’s their right to teach someone else a “lesson”.

  11. yes this happens to me alot i used too use the slideing over trick but my passanger door doesnt open from the outside anymore so im back to tring to fit into spaces that i dont fit in i have been in a crunch and had to get a stranger to move my car for me not the safest route but it worked that time and i got to school to take that test on time

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